Letters Blogatory

The Blog of International Judicial Assistance | By Ted Folkman of Folkman LLC

Posts tagged “JASTA

Case of the Day: Schermerhorn v. Israel

Posted on December 7, 2017

The case of the day is Schermerhorn v. State of Israel (D.C. Cir. 2017). I covered the District Court decision in February 2017. The case is in the “Gaza flotilla lawfare” genre, along with Doğan v. Barak. David Schermerhorn and several others set sail on the Challenger I in 2010 to take part in the “Gaza Freedom Flotilla.” The purpose of the flotilla was to try to run Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza. The IDF intercepted the ship on the high seas and, according to the plaintiffs, “detained them in violation of international law.” Schermerhorn and the others sued in Washington, and Israel moved to dismiss for lack of jursidiction, citing the FSIA. Ordinarily this would be an easy case, since the tort, if…

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JASTA Fixes Proposed

Posted on October 11, 2016

In a new post at Lawfare, John Bellinger notes that Congress is considering various proposals to “fix JASTA,” and he makes a pitch for his preferred proposal: an amendment giving the President the power to waive the new FSIA exception on a country-by-country basis, perhaps conditioning the power on the President’s periodic certification that the country in question remains a US ally and that it is taking action to fight terrorism and extremism. As Bellinger points out, as long as Congress is explicit about it, it could make this new waiver procedure retroactive, thus allowing the President to bar the actions against Saudi Arabia that have already been brought under the new statute.

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Congress Overrides The JASTA Veto

Posted on September 29, 2016

By lopsided votes, Congress overrode the President’s veto of JASTA, the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act. The vote in the Senate was 97 to 1, and in the House of Representatives the vote was 348 to 77. What’s done is done, but it just seems very odd to me for the country with the greatest presence in other countries around the world to be knocking holes in the doctrine of sovereign immunity.

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